Thursday, May 12, 2005


I like country music, usually. I am not really that fond of performers like Tim McGraw or Faith Hill, but many people are. Faith Hill has a new CD coming out and its title is "Fireflies". Fireflies and not country music is the thought for this post. I will probably buy Fireflies, just because of the title. When I was a wee one, my daddy took me on my first firefly (also called lightning bugs) collecting expedition. It was a early summer evening, the temperature was nearing 80 degrees but the breezes were still crisp. Jackets were going to be necessary as the sun drifted below the tree line. I stood at the sliding glass door waiting for that first flicker, and there it was, like a tiny beacon in the coming darkness. I shreiked with delight, and mason jars in hand, out we went to collect the "dancing lights" as I called them then. My daddy showed me how to gently cup them in my hand so as not to harm them, and running through the yard I did just that. The sky was filling with what seemed like millions of dancing lights each one flickering on and off as if a silent symphony was being played out in lights. Of course, after a while, the excitement began to build with my energy and the ones that were too high were simply swatted out of the sky to the ground so that I could add them to my jar. My daddy chuckled as he showed me how to smear a firefly on my clothes so that I would glow too, after offering the simple explanation that the fireflies likly didn't feel it as I mutilated one, I agreed to do it too, and it simply added to my delight. When our sojourn was over, I had a jar full of lights and I tightly screwed on a cap that my daddy had added holes to. I took those fireflies into my room and they acted as a makeshift night light. In the morning, the fireflies were still. Most were still alive, although my fun had resulted in some casualties. I let them all out so that I could repeat the fun that evening. My daddy never tired of running through the yard, or lifting me up to catch those fireflies. Later I learned that the lights were a mating dance, and the romance of those bugs was not lost. I anxiously await the early days of summer now. When those first lights flicker at dusk. It takes me back to that happy place I knew back when. When my daddy was Hercules and dancing lights lit my room. Whenever I think of fireflies, I think of those times, when a summer evening would be spent gathering fireflies or simply chasing them through the yard trying to predict from which direction the next light would come. I think of campouts and marshmallow roasts, and I think of laughter. Those days are nearing quickly now, and my son has a vast yard in which to catch fireflies. I will teach him to gently cup them in his hand, and I will also teach him to smear one or two on his clothes so that he glows as We both squeal with delight. I cannot wait!

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